Book - 2016
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On the evening of 15 June, 1815, the great and the good of British Soiciety have gathered in Brussels at what is to become one of the most tragic parties in history--the Duchess of Richmond's ball. For this is the eve of the Battle of Waterloo, and many of the handsome young men attending the ball will find themselves, the very next day, on the battlefield. For Sophia Trenchard, the young and beautiful daughter of Wellington's chief supplier, this night will change everything. But it is only twenty-five years later, when the upwardly mobile Trenchards move into the fashionable new area of Belgravia, that the true repercussions of that moment will be felt. For in this new world, where the aristocracy rub shoulders with the emerging nouveau riche, there are those who would prefer the secrets of the past to remain buried...
Publisher: New York : Grand Central Publishing, 2016
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 9781455541164
Branch Call Number: Fiction Fel
Characteristics: 402 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm


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Sep 28, 2019

author of Downton Abbey; this novel made into film

May 19, 2018

I rather liked this book, but as some have suggested, it was a bit slow in parts A bit predictable but overall I liked how all the characters were entwined.

JCLAmandaW Nov 30, 2016

As a huge fan of Downton Abbey, I think I had higher expectations for this novel. The writing was okay, the story cute, although dragged out unnecessarily at times, and the characters were rather predictable.

Nov 24, 2016

Very disappointed with this. If you want to read a good book about the British Regency, look elsewhere. Seriously.

For very good Regency romances, read Georgette Heyer. For the best Regency romances, read Jane Austen.

Nov 10, 2016

I expected so much more. It was a watered down version of early 1800's aristocracy with a love child that wasn't really. The story wasn't exciting and I found myself skimming without missing any real important parts of the story. Maybe it would work as a TV movie.

Nov 08, 2016

Sophia Trenchard and Lord Edmund Bellasis fall in love and get married in a top secret elopement. But is the marriage legal? And was the child conceived that day the legal heir of illegitimate?

Apparently this novel was first released in 11 weekly episodes, but I read the whole book over the course of two days.

The book is set predominantly in 1841. Fellowes takes the reader by the hand and takes them through a mystery and a romance filled with class issues that range from the servants to the upper echelons of society.

If you are a fan of Downton Abbey, you will probably enjoy this book as it takes care to make sure details are all correct and accounted for. Julian Fellowes is well able to write a historical book with ease. Plot points range from the legitimacy of a marriage to the future of the offspring of said relationship. It looks at class conflict with servants, traders, and upper class all being put on display. The story isn't a huge revelation of a new storyline, it is a romance of sorts, but rather wraps itself around tried and true topics that makes Fellowes an ace at the genre.

There is only the briefest of chapters to introduce us to Sophia and Edmund. From this speedy introduction the reader is left to try and determine if Edmund was a scoundrel who seduced the innocent Sophia or if he was an honourable man. Then we are taken 25 years into the future where the progeny of this relationship and is shown to be good looking man, kind, honourable, and blessed with a natural ability in business. In a manner, he was the perfect son born unfortunately into illegitimacy. Fellowes explores the uncomfortable mixing of class ranks in this book.

A great read for the historically minded.

Nov 02, 2016

Julian Fellowes is a genius especially when he puts his stories on film. I've never been a fan of long drawn out British historical novels or films until I came across Downton Abby; I loved every moment of it. So when I picked up Belgravia, I couldn't wait to sink my teeth into it. From a reader's standpoint, I found the characters one-dimensional. It was as if Julian had a specific actor or actors in mind when he was penning this and as a result, the characters didn't emerge well on paper. I didn't "get" the tension on the eve of the battle of Waterloo or the intricacies of having a supplier as a guest at a grand ball. Figuring that there will be a BBC or Masterpiece Theatre production down the line, I closed the book and will wait for the movie where actors can bring the scenes and characters alive.

Oct 18, 2016

Although enjoyable, this book was not exactly great. I agree with the NYT reviewer about the characters being underdeveloped.
But a nice enough read for those of us who are in Downton withdrawal.

martins_mom Sep 09, 2016

Julian Fellowes of Downton Abbey fame has written a richly-detailed study of 19th- century English social life. Reminded me of Cynthia Harrod-Eagles Morland Dynasty books.

Sep 02, 2016

Couldn't put it down. Gave myself a migraine.

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